The typical experience of many people as they begin learning Yoga initially is that of learning and practicing formal Yoga poses and other breathing and meditation techniques, self-consciously evaluating their progress with reference to some criteria based upon the instruction or system from which we are studying. In this way safe fundamentals of movement and the higher practices of Yoga are developed.
As they evolve in skill and comfort levels. Students may begin to experiment in with Yoga Vinyasa practices, linking Yoga posture and connecting movements with the the breath. This is the beginning for many students of truly enjoying Yoga as Meditation in Motion.
Yogic lore states that the formal Yoga poses we practice are the realization of enlightened sages giving form to the intuitive expressions of energy coming from within in their enlightened states. Many present-day teacher believe that these moments of clarity and expression are accessible to all as the fruit of growing skill and comfort with oneself in your Yoga and meditation practice.
As we continue to our physical Yoga asana(posture) practice through vinyasa we can begin let go further into a deeply absorbing and powerfully relaxing way to practice called the Posture Flow. Experimenting with this approach to practice can be a way to experience and express the truths of Yoga in an even deeper way. This practice is usually seen as a more advanced practice, not because it need be a physical challenge, but that it involves utilizing formal asana practice and our skills in remaining present to understand intuitively and accurately the messages of your inner experience and give them spontaneous expression through movement.
Posture Flow is a balanced way to practice, allowing “willfully” held classical Yoga Poses(asana) to give way toabsorbing periods of surrender into spontaneous movement flows. The flow experience comes as a response to the physical and energetic needs, impulses and expressions that emerge from the challenges of the held posture. There is a deep trust that when getting Into the Flow with Yoga the conscious connection of breath to bodily experience and mindful, compassionate awareness, the energy that informs this spontaneous movement is supportive and healing on a very deep level. Throughout the flow the challenge and the joy is to abandon the tendencies toward struggle and contentions that the residual thoughts and feelings the mind and “ego” may bring forth, and follow impulses to move from a place of greater clarity and ease to take over. This more advanced “meditation in movement” is the continuing connection of the body movement through the breath with this compassion awareness. As the energy of the flow diminishes you may move back into another held Pose to reorient and build more energy to animate the experience further. You may continue the process for as long as you desire.
The usual prescriptions to practice to safely and responsibly working within your physical abilities without strain, remain.